Jump to content

FC PbP House Rules (as of 2018/09/06) - RETIRED

Recommended Posts

This thread has served us very well for many years, but it has been supplanted by The House Rules Manual, under 'Manual, Getting Started' in the tabs at the top of the forum.


Please go to the Manual for up-to-date house rules. This thread will no longer be used or updated.


 - Fox, 2018/09/06




House Rules


Freedom City Play-by-Post defaults to using Ultimate Power for rules on Powers, and the core Mutants & Masterminds 2E rulebook for everything else. Anything from another book which is not specifically listed here must be approved by the Moderators on a case-by-case basis.



Abilities (The Violet Chapter)

Skills (The Green Chapter)

Feats (The Blue Chapter)

Powers (The Orange Chapter / Ultimate Power)

Power Modifiers & Structures (The Orange Chapter / Ultimate Power)

Characteristics / Drawbacks / Extra Effort (The Pink Chapter)

Equipment / Vehicles & Constructs (The Brown Chapter)

Combat (The Yellow Chapter)

Descriptor Frequency (for Powers, Drawbacks, etc.)

Advancement & Awards (For Players and Characters)

Link to comment


FCPBP characters are allowed to have Attack/Damage and Defense/Toughness tradeoffs up to +/-5 in any direction. You may have different tradeoffs for different attacks if you choose.

A minimum of 1/3 (rounded up) of a character's total Attack and Defense bonuses must come from Base Attack and Base Defense, rather than feats like Attack Focus or Dodge Focus.

Link to comment


Skill Challenges from the Masterminds Manual are allowed, for the most part. However, if there is any discrepency between the penalties given in the core book and in the MaMa (such as Accelerated Stealth), the core book numbers take precedence (a Stealth check to hide immediately after moving all-out or attacking suffers a -20 penalty, not -5).

Acrobat: This skill automatically adds to attempts to resist being Overrun or Tripped.

Bluff/Knowledge/Sense Motive: Characters using the Bluff skill for covertly passing along messages (see "Innuendo" under the Bluff skill, M&M2E, page 42) who have at least 5 ranks in a Knowledge skill can gain a +2 synergy bonus on the Bluff check by using jargon and terms specific to that Knowledge. Characters with at least 5 ranks in the same Knowledge skill get a +2 synergy bonus on the Sense Motive check to notice the message. (This is a variant of the "Arcane Innuendo" option from The Book of Magic.)

Drive/Pilot: A skill check can be used to improve a vehicle's Defense score. See "Vehicle Combat" under Combat, below.


Escape Artist:  Handcuffs require only a DC 25 Escape Artist Check to escape.  Making the DC equal to the Disable Device Check to do the same.

Knowledge (Tactics): The additional/expanded uses for Knowledge (Tactics) offered in the Masterminds Manual - using Knowledge (Tactics) in place of Stealth to set up a surprise attack, in the place of Notice or Sense Motive to detect an ambush or avoid a feint in combat, or using Knowledge (Tactics) in place of an Intelligence check for the Master Plan feat - are available here, but are not inherent. Each application requires a separate Benefit feat. Thus, to be able to use Knowledge (Tactics) in all three ways described above, you would need Benefit 3. If you just wanted one, such as the ability to use a Knowledge (Tactics) check in place of an Intelligence check for the Master Plan feat, you would jut need Benefit 1.

New Skills

FC PbP uses the following two new Knowledge skills:

Knowledge (Cosmology): Covers knowledge of extradimensional matters: the Cosmic Coil, the Terminus, parallel dimensions/realities, and so on. Roughly speaking, it's the Knowledge skill for places (and beings from places) you'd need Super-Movement (Dimensional) to reach.

Knowledge (Galactic Lore): Covers knowledge of extraterrestrial matters: the Grue, the Lor, the Stellar Khanate, entities such as the Curator and the Gorgon, hazards (natural and sapient-made) to space navigation, and so on. Roughly speaking, it's the Knowledge skill for beings & places you'd need Space Travel and/or a high ranked Teleport to reach.

Edited by HG Morrison
Escape Artist DC added
Link to comment


The option from the Masterminds Manual to take Skill Challenges as Feats is in effect. Each rank a PC buys in the feat version of a skill challenge waives 5 points worth of the penalty for that check. For example, spending 1PP on "Fast Task (Feint)" would waive the -5 penalty for Feinting as a Move Action instead of a Standard Action. This does not count against PL limits for Skill ranks.

Accurate / All-Out / Defensive / Power Attack: These exist as maneuvers available to all characters, but they can only shift the values by +/-2. Characters with these feats can shift the values by up to +/-5.

Benefit (Wealth): FCPBP does not use the optional wealth rules in the 2E book. We do, however, use a simplified system similar to the one offered in the 3E book, as detailed below:


Impoverished (Complication or 1PP Drawback)
You own the clothes on your back and whatever's in your pockets, and that's it.
Fictional Examples: Bruce Banner (when he's on the run), Man-Thing, Spawn.

Struggling (Complication)
You can usually get all your monthly bills paid, if you don't have to pay to have something repaired or replaced. But most months, you do have to pay for something to be repaired or replaced.
You either rent an apartment by yourself, or you live in a small house that either has one or two roommates, or is in either a bad neighborhood (like the Fens) or a remote rural site. DC8 Disable Device check to break in.
If you own a car, it's a Rolls Can'ardly (rolls down one hill, can 'ardly get up the next). Most likely, you walk, bike, or take public transportation.
Fictional Examples: Peter Parker (before marrying Mary-Jane), Malcolm Reynolds.

Middle Class (Default)
Salaried employment (9-to-5 job).
You're in either an apartment or a small (1-or-2-bedroom) house in an average part of town, or a medium (3-bedroom + garage) house in a bad part of town or a remote rural area. DC10 Disable Device check to break in.
You have an economy-size or mid-size sedan, or something comparable.
Fictional Examples: Buddy Baker, Helena Bertinelli.

Wealthy (Benefit 1)
Professional employment, often requiring a graduate degree (doctor, lawyer, etc.), owner of a small business, or you draw a regular stipend from some inheritance. Upper middle class or lower upper class. (Complications can be used to reflect any responsibilities your job entails.)
You live in either an apartment or a small (1-or-2-bedroom) house in an upscale neighborhood, a medium (3-bedroom + garage) house in an average neighborhood, or a large (4-bedroom + 2-car-garage) house in a remote rural location (since homes like that don't show up in bad neighborhoods). DC12 Disable Device check to break in.
You can have any sort of car short of a high-end sports coupe. You fly first-class, and you may even have your own prop-plane.
Fictional Examples: Michael Morbius, Matt Murdock, Foggy Nelson, Steve Rogers, Vic Sage.

Rich (Benefit 2)
You are a millionaire, and may own a small corporation (depending on complications). Solid upper class.
You live in either a penthouse apartment/condominium, a medium (3-bedroom + garage) house in an upscale neighborhood, a large (4-bedroom + 2-car-garage) house in an average neighborhood, or a mansion (5-or-6-bedroom + 3-car-garage) in a remote rural location. DC14 Disable Device check to break in.
You can have almost anything shy of military-grade hardware. A wardrobe full of tailored designer clothes, high-end sports cars, a private plane, drivers and servants, and just about any and every electronic gadget or toy on the market, these things are all within your reach.
Fictional Examples: Tim Drake (before inheriting Wayne Enterprises), Lucius Fox, Reed Richards.

Filthy Rich (Benefit 3)
A member of the Fiction 500. You're a billionaire, with resources comparable to multi-national corporations or the governments/militaries of major nations.
You can have any sort of (standard, non-tricked out) home you want, and almost any sort of vehicle (or, more likely, fleet of vehicles). DC16 Disable Device check to break in.
A "Rich" character has their own private plane. A "Filthy Rich" character has their own private island.
Fictional Examples: Bruce Wayne, Tony Stark, Lex Luthor, Ra's al Ghul, David Xanatos, Gomez Addams, C. Montgomery Burns, Deathklok.

Each rank in the Benefit (Wealth) feat gives you a +2 circumstance bonus to Diplomacy and Gather Information checks which involve bribery. This bonus does not count against power level caps. At the GM's discretion, the Impoverished drawback/complication either imposes a -2 penalty, or simply causes you to automatically fail certain Diplomacy or Gather Information checks. For example, the bouncer you're trying to talk to simply will not talk or let you inside unless given an adequate bribe, which you may not be able to afford.

The Wealth Benefits do not carry any free status, just the money. Wealth with no Status means an eccentric wealthy recluse whom no one has heard of.

If you want an atypical version of a vehicle or home (like a motorcycle that can transform into a helicopter, or a house with a magic scrying mirror), you need to pay for the entire vehicle/HQ with Equipment feats, not just the upgrades.

Characters may have any sort of general equipment, the likes of which would not affect die rolls and which a person of the appropriate wealth level could be expected to own, within reason, for free. Examples include a cell phone, computer, camera, or basic flashlight. Anything which gives a mechanical bonus (such as weapons, armor, or +Masterwork tools) must be paid for with Equipment feats.


Defensive Roll: You can evade damage through agility and “rolling†with an attack. Each rank of this feat gives you a +2 bonus to Toughness saving throws. But you lose this bonus whenever you are denied your dodge bonus or unable to take a free action, unless you are able to succeed on a Concentration check (DC based on circumstances; see the Concentration skill description, M&M2E page 44). Your total Toughness save bonus, including Defensive Roll, is limited by your power level.

Diehard: All PCs and non-Minion NPCs are assumed to have this feat for free. There is no need to record it on your character sheet.


Equipment: If your character is a space character, you may want a space suit. There are two versions; the "Clunky" version, freely available and costing [0 EP] and standard on space ships and space stations, gives Life Support (as the power) for a penalty of -2 to Attack, Defence, and Reflex Saves as it is clunky. 


You can alternatively buy a "Slick" space suit, stylish and cool space suit for 9 EP (Life Support power), you may wish to eliminate some of the immunities (for instance, if it is an environment suit for alien atmospheres), or boost it with ranks of protection or masterwork (for a seriously comfortable and stylish number!)


It assumed that space suits have 2 hours of oxygen (like the equipment SCUBA tank), and will decompress if damaged with the appropriate descriptor (unlike a device with life support)


Favoured Environment: This feat is no longer ranked. While in your favoured environment, you gain a +2 circumstance bonus to Stealth and Survival rolls and a +2 circumstance bonus to either Attack or Defence. The attack/defence bonus is chosen at the beginning of your turn, and you can change it on your next turn. Note that circumstance bonuses do notcount against PL caps. 
Suitable environments must be sufficiently specific, such as forests, underwater or arctic. Urban is explicitly not allowed.
You may take this feat multiple times within reason, applying to a different environment each time. Excessive use attempting to 'cover all your bases' will be frowned upon. 

Favoured Enemy: This feat is no longer ranked. When dealing with your favoured enemy type, you gain a +2 circumstance bonus on Bluff, Intimidate, Gather Information, Investigate, Knowledge, Notice, Search and Sense Motive rolls involving this enemy. Note that circumstance bonuses do not count against PL caps. 
As per the core rules, this feat is a prerequisite for Critical Strike pertaining to the same enemy type. Critical Strike allows critical hits on enemies otherwise immune to critical hits.
Suitable enemy types must be sufficiently specific, such as undead, demons, robots or mafia. Broad descriptors such as 'supervillains' or 'criminals' will not be allowed. 
You may take this feat multiple times within reason, applying to a different enemy type each time. Excessive use attempting to 'cover all your bases' will be frowned upon.
Steve Kenson says, and we agree, that you can take the Critical Strike feat without taking the Favored Enemy feat, and use Hero Points to temporarily gain the Favored Enemy feat in order to trigger the Critical Strike feat.

Improved Critical: PCs cannot purchase more than 2 ranks of this feat for a single attack.

Improved Disarm: When attempting to Disarm a foe, you gain a +4 bonus on the opposed Strength check, and they do not get the opportunity to disarm you.

Improved Ranged Disarm: This feat from the Masterminds Manual is explicitly allowed.

Improved Sunder: When attacking an object held by another character which gets a Size bonus to Defense, you negate up to 4 points of that bonus (effectively gaining up to +4 Attack, but only for the purposes of canceling out the object's Defense bonus from being smaller than Medium-sized, and thus, this bonus does not count against PL caps).

Interpose: Once per round, when an ally within range of your normal movement is hit by an attack, you can choose to place yourself between the attacker and your ally as a reaction, making you the target of the attack instead. If the attack hits, you suffer the effects normally. If the attack misses you, it also misses your ally. You must declare your intention to trade places with an ally before the attack roll is made. You cannot use Interpose if you are stunned or otherwise incapable of taking actions. You cannot use Interpose against Perception-range attacks or General Area attacks, only attacks which require an attack roll.


Lionheart: This feat from Warriors & Warlocks is explicitly allowed.

Luck: PCs can have a maximum number of ranks in this feat equal to 1/3 of their PL, rounded down. PCs with Luck Control can purchase additional ranks of Luck as a power feat of Luck Control, as long as their total ranks in Luck from all sources do not exceed 1/2 their PL. NPCs cannot have Luck, unless they have Luck Control, in which case they can purchase Luck as a power feat of Luck Control, up to 1/2 their PL.

Master Plan: See "Knowledge (Tactics)" in "Skills," above. If a character purchases a second rank of this feat, they can use Knowledge (Tactics) instead of Intelligence when rolling Master Plan checks.

Minion/Sidekick: See "Summon" under Powers, below.

Ninja Run: This feat from Mecha & Manga is explicitly allowed.

Online Research: This feat from Mecha & Manga is explicitly allowed.

Speed of Thought: This feat from the Masterminds Manual is explicitly allowed.


Untapped Potential: This feat from Hero High is banned.

Withstand Damage: This feat from Mecha & Manga is banned.

New Feats

The following new feats are available for characters in FC PbP: 

Benefit (Native) - General, Ranked
You are a native of (and educated/experienced with) some non-Prime!Earth culture. You may be from a another world in the Prime!Universe (like Kinigos), a parallel world (like Earth-Victoriana), or even the Terminus itself! If you are from another world in the Prime!Universe, you gain a +5 bonus on Knowledge (Galactic Lore) checks pertaining to your native culture; if from another dimension, you gain a +5 bonus on Knowledge (Cosmos) checks pertaining to your native culture.
Note that you do not need this feat to be from a non-Prime!Earth culture. This feat represents having a strong grounding in/affinity for the culture.

Dazzling Attack - Combat, Ranked
Choose a sense type when you purchase this feat. You may acquire additional sense types with additional ranks, but you may only target one sense type per attack. When you make a damaging melee attack, you can choose not to inflict normal damage. Instead, the target makes a Fortitude save against a DC of 10 plus your damage bonus. A successful save results in no effect. A failed save impairs all senses the target possesses of the sense type corresponding to your feat. They suffer a -4 penalty to any Notice or Search checks involving that sense type, and all other targets gain partial concealment against them. Failure by 5 or more means the target's senses are disabled, and all other targets gain total concealment against them; if you targeted Visual-type senses, the target is Blinded, if Auditory, the target is Deafened, etc. The effects of a failed save last for 1 round. Narrative examples of this attack include smashing your hands (or weapons) against the target's ears to damage their eardrums, cutting them above the eyes to interfere with their vision, or even a strike to the nose that temporarily numbs their sense of smell.

Paralyzing Attack - Combat
When you make a damaging melee attack, you can choose not to inflict normal damage. Instead, the target makes a Fortitude save against a DC of 10 plus your damage bonus. A successful save results in no effect. A failed save means the target is Slowed for one round. Failure by 5 or more means the target is Paralyzed for one round. Narrative examples of this attack include strikes aimed at specific nerve clusters or muscles in the body to temporarily inhibit voluntary movement.

Link to comment


Alternate Form: Increasing the Action to use this power is a -1pp per step Drawback, not a -1pp/rank per step Flaw. (Since Alternate Form is not something one normally activates multiple times per combat -- in most cases, you activate it at the start of a fight and do not turn it off until you're done -- requiring a longer time to active it is not as big a hindrance as it would be for Attack effects like Blast, which would be used almost every round.)

Communication: Communication is two-way by default but may have Limited [One-Way, -1]. See the Equipment section for House Rules regarding team communicators.

Concealment: Increasing the Action to use this effect is a -1pp per step Drawback, not a -1pp/rank per step Flaw. (See Alternate Form for the reasoning.)

Create Object: Along with Move Object, this is one of the only powers in this game which is "soft-capped." Your ranks in the Create Object power are not capped at your PL. However, the saving throw DC provoked by any attempt to trap a foe in a Created Object or drop a Created Object on a foe is subject to the character's PL caps for damage, and attempts to use high-Toughness Created Objects to circumvent defensive PL caps will not be tolerated.

Density: Increasing the Action to use this effect is a -1pp per step Drawback, not a -1pp/rank per step Flaw. (See Alternate Form for the reasoning.)

Drain: If an object's Toughness is reduced below -5 by a Drain Toughness effect, then that object is Destroyed.

Gravity Control: This power, as described in the books, is banned. Please use a Limited (Up/Down) Area Move Object effect instead, with the "Gravity Control" descriptor (a far less broken power). Lifting things up or pinning them down requires a grapple check, like any other use of Move Object.

Growth: Increasing the Action to use this effect is a -1pp per step Drawback, not a -1pp/rank per step Flaw. (See Alternate Form for the reasoning.)

Immunity: See "Descriptor Frequencies" below for a detailed cost breakdown of Immunities by descriptor frequency.
Immunity 5 (Interaction Skills) does not include Sense Motive.
Immunity to Fatigue Effects does not make you immune to the fatigue caused by Extra Effort.

Insubstantial: Increasing the Action to use this effect is a -1pp per step Drawback, not a -1pp/rank per step Flaw. (See Alternate Form for the reasoning.)

Impervious: This extra is capped at the character's PL, regardless of which saving throw it is purchased for. It can be purchased for any of the four saving throws.

Move Object: Along with Create Object, this is one of the only two powers in this game which is "soft-capped." Your power rank is not subject to PL caps. However, any damage inflicted by throwing Moved Objects is subject to the character's PL caps for damage.

Nullify: The 3PP/rank version of Nullify, "All Powers, regardless of Descriptors," is banned.

Probability Control: Taliesin's "Supremacy" power (Probability Control, Flaws: Limited 2 [One Attack/Task]) is explicitly allowed.

Regeneration: Regeneration from the Unconscious condition is banned.
+True Resurrection is a +0 extra, automatically assumed to be in effect for any Resurrection ranks purchased.

Shrinking: The +Normal Abilities extra does not exist. +Normal Movement and +Normal Toughness are Feats, not Extras.
Shrinking gets a pass on the "increasing Action is a Drawback, not a Flaw" we have in place for Growth and other powers. While it would be internally consistent for us to make increasing its Action be a Drawback rather than a Flaw, the Refs feel Shrinking is overpriced as is for what it does, and so could use the cost break.

Space Travel: 3e rules are used for simplification. Space Travel cannot be arrayed with flight. It is bought as per the "Super movement" power with three ranks at 2 PP/rank. As a guideline, the three ranks are:

Rank 1: Interplanetary. 

You can travel at near light speed. Effectively this means travel within a solar system in minutes. Travel to other stars will take years (or centuries!). Examples, TIE fighter. 
Rank 2: Interstellar. 
You can travel at faster than light. Travelling between solar systems takes a few days. Travel within a solar system takes seconds. Travel to other galaxies will take years or centuries. Precise times vary according to distance of destination and speed of plot (hey, hyperspace is wibbly wobbly, you know?) Examples: Red Dwarf, Battle Star Gallactica
Rank 3: Intergalactic. 
You can travel at much faster than light. Travel within a solar system is virtually instantaneous. Travel between solar systems takes hours. Travel between galaxies will take several days. Again, precise times vary according to distance of destination and speed of plot. Examples: Millenium Falcon

For faster speeds, or interstellar "hops" which take place instantly, use teleport (long range, accurate). The limitation "Only in deep space" is a valid -1 flaw (as you would have to travel outside of a solar system to activate the jump). Usable only in space is a 1 point drawback. Examples: The Tardis


Summon (Animate Object, Duplication, Gestalt, Machine Animation, etc.): A Minion/Sidekick, whether purchased with feats or Summoned, cannot have a PP total higher than the hero. If the character concept involves a "minion" in service to a less powerful entity, then the more powerful "minion" is the Hero, and the "boss" is purchased as a Minion/Sidekick.

Summon may have its Duration bought up to Continuous, but Summon may not have the +Independent extra.

The +Heroic extra is allowed, but only if it applies to ONE Summoned being. A character can have up to one Sidekick. A Gestalt can have up to two +Heroic components. In other words, no player can control more than two heroic characters at once.

The Progression (Minions) feat is allowed for Summon powers, but is capped at rank 4 (25 Minions).

Minions (attained either via the feat or via the Summon power) may use the Aid and Combined Attack actions (but see "Combined Attack" under Combat, below).

In-character posts made containing only Minions, or with just a bare minimum of contact with the main hero, will only count for 1/2 credit for that hero's post counts when calculating their monthly PP awards. In-character posts featuring Sidekicks count for full credit.

Super-Senses: This is a clarification of how Super-Senses works, assembled from the core rulebook, Ultimate Power, and many of Steve Kenson's posts on the Official M&M Forums.

Some sense types have certain Super-Sense extras by default. Infravision costs 1PP instead of 5PP because Visual senses are already +Accurate, +Acute, and +Ranged. But any Concealment/Dazzle/etc. that hits "all Visual senses" hits Infravision along with Normal Vision.

Visual Sense Type
Default Extras: +Accurate, +Acute, +Ranged.
PCs start with: Normal Vision.
Examples of other Visual Senses: Infravision (infrared spectrum), Ultravision (ultraviolet spectrum).

Audio Sense Type
Default Extras: +Acute, +Radius, +Ranged.
PCs start with: Normal Hearing.
Examples of other Audio Senses: Ultrasonic Hearing, Sonar (Ultrasonic Hearing, +Accurate, 3PP).

Olfactory Sense Type (Smell/Taste)
Default Extras: +Radius, +Ranged.
PCs start with: Normal Olfactory.
Examples of Olfactory Super-Senses: Scent (Normal Olfactory Sense, +Acute, 1PP).

Tactile Sense Type
Default Extras: +Accurate, +Acute, +Radius.
PCs start with: Normal Touch.
Examples of other Tactile Senses: Tremorsense (Tactile Sense, +Ranged, 2PP).

Mental Sense Type
Default Extras: None.
PCs start with: Normal Mental (the byproduct of having INT, WIS, and CHA all at 1+, and the reason you have the Sense Motive skill).
Examples of other Mental Senses: Psychic Blindsight (Mental Sense, +Accurate, +Acute, +Radius, +Ranged, 6PP).

Radio Sense Type
Default Extras: +Acute, +Radius, +Ranged.
PCs start with: None.
Examples of Radio Senses: Radio (1PP, lets you pick up radio signals like an antenna), Radar (Radio Sense, +Accurate, 3PP).

So, as you can see, when choosing a sense type for a Super-Sense (such as "Detect Life" or "Detect Magic"), there's a tradeoff. If you choose "Visual," then you get a bunch of Super-Sense extras "for free," but the sense also gets bypassed or taken out by the most common type of sensory powers (Concealment, Dazzle, Illusion, Obscure, etc.), Visual. If you choose "Mental," it starts with none of the Super-Sense extras by default, but almost nothing Conceals or Obscures against Mental senses.





  • Awareness and Detect: These are merged into a single Super-Sense called [Descriptor] Awareness, which is capable of making Notice checks as a passive reaction as necessary or as a Move Action when actively looking for something. The base cost for Awareness is based on the frequency of the descriptor: 1PP base for an Uncommon descriptor (ex: celestial/holy, demonic/infernal, necromancy), 2PP for a Common descriptor (ex: mental, metals, plants), and 3PP for a Very Common descriptor (ex: electromagnetic energy, magic). Awareness has a default range increment of -1 per 10 feet.
  • Penetrates Concealment: By default, the +Penetrates Concealment (4PP) Extra of Super-Senses can see through any obstacle (but not effects like Concealment, Illusion, or Obscure). You do not need to define "one reasonably common substance" which you cannot see through. Not being able to see through one semi-common substance, such as gold or lead, is a 1PP Power Loss Drawback. Not being able to see through a wider range of common substances (like "natural earth") is a Limited Flaw, reducing the cost by -1PP per rank (from 4PP to 2PP). This means X-Ray Vision (Normal Vision, Extras: Penetrates Concealment [4], Drawbacks: Power Loss [Lead]) costs 3PP, not 4PP.


Super-Strength: This power adds to the character's bonus when resisting Disarm checks, using Disarm with unarmed damage or a Mighty attack, and Trip checks where the character is using Strength rather than Dexterity/Acrobat (attacking or resisting).

Teleport: Teleport with the Attack extra is not allowed. You may take it with the Affects Others extra, but remember that will only work on willing targets.
Per Steve Kenson's suggestion, you may use Teleport to get out of a Grapple, if you can make a DC 20 Concentration check.

Edited by HG Morrison
Links fixed
Link to comment


Affects Objects: If a Construct is hit by a Fortitude effect with the +Affects Objects extra, it gains a Reflex save in place of the Fortitude save.

Autofire: Autofire is limited to one rank; the second and third are not permitted.

Insidious: This modifier is a 1PP power feat, not a +1PP/rank extra.

Progression (Save DC): Powers which are not normally Attack effects, but which become so through the application of the +Attack extra or -Saving Throw flaw, such as Concealment or Luck Control, can have the DC of their saving throws increased by +1 per rank with the Progression feat.

Subtle: Subtle for the Communication and the ESP powers works as stated in ULTIMATE POWER. For all other effects, Subtle works as follows: Subtle 1 requires a DC 20 Notice check to be detected by normal senses, but is noticed automatically by appropriate Awareness/Detect super-senses. Effects with Subtle 2 cannot be detected by normal senses, but can be noticed by an appropriate Awareness/Detect super-sense if the observer makes a DC 20 Notice check.

New Modifiers

Multiple Weapons [Ranked]: The character has two or more hand-held weapons or pieces of equipment represented by an Easy-to-Lose Device. Being disarmed while holding one of these weapons does not prevent the character from using the other weapons unless they are also removed from their possession. Each rank of Multiple Weapons adds another weapon beyond the first. These can be identical copies or unique items represented by an Array.


Device 2 (10PP Container; Flaws: Easy-to-Lose; Power Feats: Multiple Weapons 1) [7PP] (twin magic pistols)

Damage 4 (Extras: Ranged, Power Feats: Accurate 1, Improved Critical 1) [10DP] (fire, magic)

Device 3 (15PP Container; Flaws: Easy-to-Lose; Power Feats: Alternate Power 2, Multiple Weapons 2) [13PP] (high-tech arsenal)

Base: Damage 5 (Extras: Penetrating; Power Feats: Affects Insubstantial 2, Improved Critical 2, Mighty) [15DP] (lightning sword; electricity, tech)

AP: Move Object 7 (Power Feats: Precise) [15DP] (gravity gun; gravimetric, tech)

AP: Stun 5 (Extras: Alternate Save [Will], Ranged) [15DP] (mind scrambler; psionic, tech)

Power Structures (Arrays, Containers, Variables)

Increasing the Action required to activate or reconfigure an Array or Container is a Drawback, not a Flaw. Modifying the Action required to reconfigure a Variable Power is still a Flaw.

Fortune feats (feats which require the use of a Hero Point) cannot be folded into Arrays or acquired with Variable Powers. They must be purchased as stand-alone, always-active traits, whether they are normal feats or power feats.

Skills and Feats in general are not explicitly forbidden from being acquired with VPs or folded into arrays as Enhanced Trait APs, but this sort of thing is not encouraged and will be watched closely by the Moderators.

Variable Power: Powers built upon the Variable Power structure, such as Shapeshift or Mimic, cannot be Alternate Powers in an Array. The versatility of a Variable Power is balanced by its high overhead cost; placing it in an Array would negate that by allowing the character to switch to another Alternate Power and convert that overhead cost into another, higher-ranked power.

Skills and Feats acquired through a Variable Power are limited to a number of allocated power points equal to the rank of the Variable Power. Therefore a character with Mimic 3 (15PP Variable Power, All Target's Traits, Multiple Traits at Once) [15PP] can acquire +12 Intimidate and Attack Focus [Melee] 3 but not +20 Intimidate or Attack Focus [Melee] 6. As with spending a Hero Point for a Heroic Feat, Fortune Feats may not be acquired through a Variable Power.

When submitting a character with a Variable Power, you must list a few sample configurations on the character sheet, to give the Moderators (and any potential GMs) a general idea of how you intend to use it.

Link to comment

Extra Effort

When using Extra Effort, you can gain two of the listed benefits, even stacking two of the same type of benefit. However, when using this Extraordinary Effort, you also double the cost of the effort; you’re Exhausted starting the turn after your extraordinary effort. If you are already Fatigued, you are Unconscious. If you are already Exhausted, then you cannot use extraordinary effort. Spending a Hero Point at the start of your next turn reduces the cost of your extraordinary effort to merely Fatigued, the same as a regular extra effort.


Holding Back: This drawback from Hero High is banned.

Nagging Injury: These drawbacks from Agents of Freedom are allowed on a case-by-case basis, although most of them are considered Uncommon, Minor drawbacks worth 1PP.

Nightmares: This drawback from Mecha & Manga is explicitly allowed. A character with this drawback must roll theFatigue check at the start of every thread, and again every time the character sleeps and wakes up within the same thread.

Link to comment


If an object's Toughness is reduced below -5 by a Drain Toughness effect, then that object is Destroyed.

Most Vehicle and Headquarters Features from Agents of Freedom and The Book of Magic are allowed.

Communicators: A character of average or greater Wealth may have a normal consumer cellphone as part of their implied possessions without paying Equipment Points. This phone is not practical for use in combat, requires a compatible network and is subject to interference at the GM's discretion as befits the plot. This may be flavoured as a basic 'communicator' with the same mechanical limitations.

Communication bought as Equipment requires a Move Action when used during combat and is subject to the same GM fiat as all Equipment. It may not be Subtle or Selective.


Communication 5 (Radio, 5 miles; Extra: Area; Flaw: Limited [Other X-Phones]) [5EP] (X-Phone)

Communication bought as a Power or Device can be used as a Free Action during combat and may be Subtle and/or Selective. GM fiat against it is worth a Hero Point.

Temporal Limbo: This HQ Feature from The Book of Magic is explicitly banned.


See "Vehicle Combat" under Combat, below.


Any character without a Constitution score is considered a Construct. Constructs are by definition objects and not living creatures.

All Constructs must purchase the 30PP Immunity to Fortitude Effects at character creation. Otherwise, their lack of a CON score would kill them.

Constructs do not suffer nonlethal damage conditions, such as Bruised or Staggered. Any nonlethal damage suffered by a Construct (or an inanimate object) is automatically converted to lethal damage (so a Construct who suffers a Bruise from nonlethal combat damage would suffer an Injury instead).

However, if an attack is incapable of inflicting lethal damage, as the result of a drawback, then it is incapable of harming a Construct (since the attacker cannot choose to inflict lethal damage).

Constructs can be Dazed by combat damage, just like living creatures.

If a Construct is hit by a Fortitude effect with the +Affects Objects extra (which overrides their Fortitude Immunity), it gains a Reflex save in place of the Fortitude save. Inanimate objects, on the other hand, get no saving throw and suffer the maximum possible effect (with the exception of Devices, whose wearers/wielders can make saves on their behalf, as detailed in the Combat chapter).

Link to comment


All damage from all sources (combat, falling, knockback, etc.) is considered to be Nonlethal unless otherwise specified.

Accurate / All-Out / Defensive / Power Attack: These mechanics (see the Feats of the same name in the core rulebook) exist as options for all characters, but they can only shift the values by +/-2. Characters who invest into the eponymous feats, however, can shift the values by up to +/-5.

Aggressive/Defensive Stance: These maneuvers no longer exist.

Charge: This maneuver changes from a Full Action where you move at double-speed in a straight line and then attack, to a Standard Action where you move at your speed in a straight line and then attack. This allows you to take an unrestricted Move Action beforehand if you wish, to set up the charge, and makes the clause about surprise rounds unnecessary.

  • Charge (Standard Action): Charging allows you to move and attack in a single Standard Action. You must move at least 10 feet and may move up to your normal speed. You must stop as soon as you are within striking range of your target (you can't run past the target and attack from another direction). After moving, you may make a single melee attack, with a +2 attack bonus. You suffer a –2 Defense penalty for 1 round (until your next action).
Combined Attack: The bonus damage from a Combined Attack does not count for overcoming +Impervious saving throws.

Costume Change: Characters may choose to change into their heroic costume or uniform as a Full Round Action once Initiative has been determined, but in doing so lose their Dodge bonus for that round. Characters with Quick Change or sufficient Quickness may still change as a Free Action without penalty and characters may still opt to take the full minute (ten rounds) to change, particularly if they are outside of combat.

Critical Hits: A critical hit (defined as a roll of a natural 20 on an attack, which would have hit the target's Defense even were it not a natural 20) can have one of the following 3 effects, chosen by the player when the critical hit is rolled:

  • Increased Effect: The critical hit increases the difficulty to resist the attack's effect by +5.
  • Added Effect: The critical hit adds another effect onto the attack, but its effective rank is 0, so the saving throw DC is just the base value (15 for Damage, 10 for other attack powers). The added effect can be anything the player can reasonably describe and justify as adjunct to the original effect: Nauseate or Stun (useful for all sorts of "gut checks," blows to the head or vitals, etc.), Dazzle (blood in the eyes, boxing the ears, etc.), or Drain (Drain Dex via striking the hamstrings or a "nerve cluster", Drain Con for a particularly savage wound), to name a few. The GM decides if the effect suits the circumstances of the attack. The target makes saves against the attack's initial and added effects separately.
  • Alternate Effect: The critical hit results in an alternate effect for the attack, like a use of Extra Effort for a power stunt, except the character suffers no Fatigue as a result. This option can represent a "lucky" attack that does something completely different, like blinding a target, or imposing some other condition.
Damage: Characters failing a Toughness save by 5-9 are Dazed & Bruised, not Stunned & Bruised (Dazed, Bruised and Injured if the Damage is lethal). Similarly, characters failing a Toughness save by 10-14 are Staggered & Dazed, not Staggered & Stunned (Staggered, Disabled and Dazed if the Damage is lethal). 

Disarm: A character resisting a Disarm check, or using their unarmed damage or a Mighty attack to disarm a foe, can apply their Super-Strength ranks to the check.

Grappling: A character's Grapple bonus is equal to the sum of their Melee Attack bonus, their Strength bonus, any Super-Strength ranks, any Size modifiers, any Elongation ranks, and possibly any Additional Limbs ranks (see the power description). If the character has the Grapple Finesse feat, then they may substitute their Dexterity bonus for their Strength bonus.

A character grappling a foe with Move Object derives their Grapple bonus from the sum of their Ranged Attack bonus and their Move Object power rank. If their Move Object power is Perception-ranged, their Grapple bonus is equal to double their power rank.

  • Escape (Move Action): You attempt to escape a grapple. Roll an opposed check, with either your Grapple bonus or your Escape skill (or Dexterity bonus, if you have no ranks in Escape), whichever is higher, against your foe's Grapple bonus. If you succeed, then you break free, and you can move up to your speed away from the grappler.

    Using Powers to Escape: Per Steve Kenson's suggestion, using superpowers (Insubstantial, Teleport, etc.) to break out of a Grapple requires a DC 20 Concentration check.

  • Grapple (Standard Action): You attempt to grapple a target. Make a melee attack roll against the target. If successful, roll a Grapple check, opposed by the target's Grapple bonus or their Reflex save. If you roll a critical hit on the attack roll, you gain +5 to your grapple check. If you win, the target is Pinned. They are held immobile, losing their dodge bonus to Defense, and suffering an additional -4 Defense penalty. If you win by 5+, or if you win another opposed grapple check (requiring another Standard Action), the target is Bound, and thus, Helpless, unable to move, or take any actions which require physical activity other than Escaping, with a Defense of (5 + size modifier). Other adjacent characters gain an additional +4 attack bonus against them, and can coup-de-grace them as a full action. You lose your dodge bonus to Defense against foes outside the grapple while grappling a foe (unless you have the Grapple Finesse feat).

    Maintaining a grapple is a Free Action, but you cannot perform other actions requiring the use of your grappling limbs while doing so. Normally, maintaining a grapple requires the use of both hands. The Improved Grapple feat allows you to maintain a grapple with one hand (as can the Additional Limbs power - see the power description).

    A larger character can grapple more foes of a smaller size. Double the number of foes the character can grapple at once per size category the attacker is larger than the defenders. So, for example, a Medium attacker can grapple one Medium opponent, two Small opponents (one under each arm, for example), four Tiny opponents, etc.

    Since maintaining the grapple is a Free Action, you can take a Standard Action to inflict an attack upon a grappled target on subsequent rounds after the grapple has been established (or on the same round, if you Surge for another Standard Action). There is no need for an attack roll (and thus, no chance to score a critical hit or use tradeoff feats); the grappled foe must simply roll a saving throw against your attack.

    If you are maintaining a grapple at a distance with Move Object, then you must still make an attack roll to hit the grappled target with a ranged attack. But they are Pinned or Bound, and all the usual Defense penalties for those conditions apply (as do tradeoff feats and critical hits, since an attack roll is involved).

    If you try to move while grappling a foe, you must drag them along with you. Roll an opposed Strength check against your grappled foe. If you succeed, you move, and your foe moves along with you. If you fail, then you cannot move unless you release your foe. You must be strong enough to at least push or drag your foe, and normal movement penalties for encumbrance apply.

    Since there is no action/reaction between an attacker using Move Object and their target, they cannot "drag" their target. They must move them like the target of any other Move Object power, by "throwing" them as a Move Action.

    You can end a grapple (releasing your foe) as a Free Action. If you are unable to take the Free Action to maintain the grapple (if you are Stunned, for example), then the grapple ends automatically.

    If you take a Standard Action to grapple a foe, then you can then throw them as a Move Action on the same round (thus, Grappling and Throwing a foe is a Full Action). On subsequent rounds after you initiated the grapple, throwing the grappled foe is a Standard Action.

    The functions of the existing Grappling feats remain unchanged.

    • Grappling Block still allows you to initiate a Grapple check as a Reaction following a successful Block maneuver.
    • Improved Grab still allows you to initiate a Grapple check as a Reaction following a successful unarmed attack.
    • Improved Grapple still allows you to maintain a Grapple with one arm, leaving your other arm free to take other actions. And since maintaining a Grapple is now a Free Action, now this feat actually does something.
    • Improved Pin inflicts a -4 penalty to any Grappled character's Escape checks (since all grapples now inflict the Pinned condition).
Trip: A character using Dexterity to resist a Trip attempt can use their full Acrobat bonus instead. A character using Strength for a Trip check (offensive or defensive) can apply their Super-Strength ranks.


Vehicle Combat

As per the Masterminds Manual, a character operating a vehicle can take a move action to move the vehicle under its own power, and either a standard action to attack with any vehicle-mounted weapons, or a standard action for "evasive maneuvers," which replaces the vehicle's normal Defense (10 + vehicle's size modifier) with (the result of the operator's skill check + vehicle's size modifier) for 1 round. The "Simultaneous Task" skill challenge can be used to both fire weapons and perform evasive maneuvers in the same standard action, with a -10 penalty to the operator's skill check. A challenge feat can be taken to reduce the penalty to -5 (one rank), or to eliminate it altogether (2 ranks).

Please note that these are not the only actions available to a character operating a vehicle, and that the character is, depending on the circumstances, free to use a personal weapon or attack power instead of the weapons mounted on the vehicle.

Link to comment

Descriptor Frequency

Very Common
Bludgeoning Damage (Lethal + Nonlethal)
Divine (Any powers wielded or bestowed by "gods")
Electromagnetic Energy/Radiation (Electricity, Gamma Rays, Infrared, Magnetism, Microwaves, Radio Waves, X-Rays, Ultraviolet, Visible Light, etc.)
Piercing Damage (Lethal + Nonlethal)
Slashing Damage (Lethal + Nonlethal)

Ballistic Damage (Bullets, Explosions)
Impact Damage (Falling, Knockback, Slam Attacks)
Radiation (Nuclear Force, Radioactive Materials)
Weather (Not Including Lightning)

Gas (Inhaled and Skin Contact)
Iron ("Cold" / "Pure")
Life Energy
Magic (Specific Type - "Necromancy," etc.)
Silver ("Pure")

Immunity costs 20PP for all effects of a Very Common descriptor (such as "All Magic Effects"), 10PP for all Damage of a Very Common descriptor or all effects of a Common Descriptor (such as "All Magic Damage," or "All Fire Effects"), 5PP for all Damage of a Common descriptor or all effects of an Uncommon descriptor (such as "All Fire Damage" or "All Hellfire Effects"), and 2PP for all Damage of an Uncommon descriptor (such as "All Hellfire Damage").

Special Cases
Immunity to one sense-dependent effect targeting one sense: 2PP

  • Example: Immunity to Auditory Dazzle

Immunity to any sense-dependent effect targeting one sense: 5PP

  • Example: Immunity to Auditory Effects

Immunity to one sense-dependent effect targeting any sense: 5PP

  • Example: Immunity to Dazzle

Immunity to all sense-dependent effects: 10PP

Immunity to one non-Damage effect: 5PP

  • Example: Immunity to Drain, Immunity to Nauseate

Immunity to one non-Damage effect targeting one Trait: 2PP

  • Example: Immunity to Drain Toughness
Link to comment

Character Advancement & Awards

In-Character Posting Awards: 1-5 PP per month

Characters will receive between 1 and 5 PP monthly based on their level of participation in the forum. Any character who "plays" during the month will receive 1 PP. Characters who are actively involved in threads, campaigns, and stories (more than 15 IC posts with that character per month) will receive 2 PP; characters who are extremely involved in threads, campaigns, and stories (more than 25 IC posts with that character per month) will receive 3 PP; characters who are ridiculously involved in threads, campaigns and stories (more than 50 IC posts with that character per month) will receive 4 PP as a participation award; characters who are monstrously active (100+ posts) earn 5 PP.

  • 1-14 IC posts = 1 PP
  • 15-24 IC posts = 2 PP
  • 25-49 IC posts = 3 PP
  • 50-99 IC posts = 4 PP
  • 100+ IC posts = 5 PP

Note: As a loose rule of thumb, IC posts should be no shorter than 500 characters. Spamming the IC threads, making little short posts and carrying on conversations one line at a time in order to boost your post count will not earn you PPs; it will just make others not want to play with you anymore.


Special Cases

Posts written entirely for Sidekicks/Minions, in which the main player character does not appear, count for full credit and are added to post count tally of their 'parent' player character at the end of the month.

Posts written primarily as a GM (when running an adventure for others) count for double credit (that is, each GM post counts as two posts); posts primarily written as or for an NPC (when running a specific non-player character to assist the GM) count as full credit. Both can be applied to any character you choose (or even broken up among multiple characters).

By default, using a retired PC or being involved in a non-canon post (such as "What if" or "Alternative Versions of...") means that posts are worth 1/2 of normal. The reason for this has been to stop over-use of such threads. 

However you can nominate one thread at the end of the month (when posting your post count) that is either a "Special Edition" (A non-canon thread or "what if" thread, or using an alternative version of your PC), or a "Guest Starring...." (A thread featuring one of your retired PCs). This can be a different thread every month. If you have more than one thread that is non-canon or features a retired PC, you can still have these posts counted, as previously, as worth 1/2 normal. 

For "What if" or non-canon "Special edition" threads, posts should be allocated to the PC you are using for that thread.

When using a retired PC in "Guest Starring..." thread, nominate one PC that all the posts are transferred to as a block. 

For GM posts in a special edition thread, posts are added to the total GM count (Which can be split and divided as you wish)


Other Contribution Awards

Refs (and Admins) who feel that a player is making a significant contribution to the site may give that player a bonus PP to apply to either of his or her characters. Additionally, characters who complete especially important, long-term story goals may also receive a contribution award.

The Interview (aka 20 Questions) counts as a Contribution Award, as it helps flesh out your character, which gives the Refs a better idea on how to challenge and reward them. Filling out the Interview earns you 1PP.

Those feeling more adventurous and tackle The Questionnaire (aka the HellQ); filling out the Questionnaire earns you 2PP.

Making an entry for the Reputation thread will also earn you 1PP.

Creating and submitting NPCs can earn points. The first two NPCs you submit earn you 1PP each.

With Ref approval, fanart can earn you 1PP (per month) for site service. 

Every few months the Refs offers a chance to do a Vignette. Doing one of these earns you 1PP - and 2PP if your vignette is at least 1000 words.

Note that the 20 Questions/Interview, Hell Q, Reputation post, and Vignettes do not themselves count as posts.

Contributing to the FCPbP Guidebook can earn points. Creating a page for your character -- which must be more than simply copying & pasting the fluff parts of your character sheet -- will earn that character 2PP. The content of these pages is flexible but take a look at existing character pages to get a better sense of what is expected.

Creating Guidebook pages for other topics or otherwise making significant contributions can also earn 2PP for the first page/contribution and an additional 1PP for each page/contribution beyond that in a given month, up to 4PP for three or more pages/contributions. If a page has been specifically solicited by a Ref it's worth an extra point to a maximum of 5PP earned in one month. The rewards for player character pages do not count against this 5PP cap; if you're inclined to complete full pages for three of your PCs over the course of one month they are each worth 2PP for each respective character. Other Guidebook awards may be assigned to whichever character the player prefers.

Refs (that is, Staff Members, Global Mods, and Admins) earn 1 extra pp every month, because you people exhaust us.


Power Level Caps

Players start with three character slots, two at PL10 / 150PP and one at PL7 / 105PP. After gaining 10PP, their PL advances by 1. Thereafter characters' PLs will advance with every 15PP, until hitting PL 15 (at 220pp). PL advancement stops at that point, but you continue earning power points, until you hit PL 15 / 250PP (but see below).

The advancement is summarized in the following charts:

A PL 10 character's advancement would look like this:

PPs earned          Total PPs          PL

   1-9                    151-159           10

   10-24                160-174           11

   25-39                175-189           12

   40-54                190-204           13

   55-69                205-219           14

   70-100              220-250           15


And a PL 7 character's advancement would look like this:

PPs earned          Total PPs          PL

   1-9                    106-114            7

   10-24                115-129            8

   25-39                130-144            9

   40-54                145-159           10

   55-69                160-174           11

   70-84                175-189           12

   85-99                190-204           13

   100-114            205-219           14

   115-145            220-250           15


Once your character reaches 250PP (and is "maxed out"), you do not have to retire them. Any posts you make with them will be added to the posts totals for another one of your PCs. Point totals will be noted as "[points spent] / [points earned {up to 250}] [[total points earned]]".

Ex.: Doktor Archeville is a maxed out character, with 250PP both earned and spent, but his player keeps using him, and earns another 10 points. His PP total would be listed as 250/250 [260].


Player Awards

To reward longevity and commitment to actively role-playing over a lengthy span of months, players are presented with Veteran Awards as they reach milestones of Power Points earned. Each month the highest amount of PP earned among a player's characters will be added to that player's Veteran Progress. As that total increases the player will earn Veteran Awards and receive the corresponding Player Tier:

  • 30PP: Bronze
  • 60PP: Silver
  • 90PP: Gold
  • 120PP: Platinum
  • 150PP: Impervium
  • 180PP: Orichalcum

Players who reach a Veteran Progress total of 210PP+ are awarded the ceremonial Electrum tier, which does not bestow a Veteran Reward but does come with substantial bragging rights!

An additional Veteran Reward, separate from the Veteran Progress, is awarded the first time a player maxes out a single character at 250PP total. It is therefore possible to earn a total of seven Veteran Awards.

Beyond the three character slots available immediately to new players - two slots at PL10 / 150PP and one slot at PL7 / 105PP - each Veteran Reward may be spent in the following ways:

  • One additional character slot at:
    • PL7 / 105PP
    • PL10 / 150PP
    • PL12 / 180PP
  • Promoting an existing character to PL10 / 150PP or PL12 / 180PP, with rollover PP earned*
  • 15PP worth of the following ranked Feats, divided as the player chooses between their characters:
    • Equipment
    • Minion
    • Sidekick

* Rollover Points: Characters promoted to a higher base Power Level have the normal number of PP plus a number of additional points equal to 1/3rd the amount already earned with that character. This allows players to adjust an existing character concept to a higher 'weight class' and does not affect Veteran Progress.

Veteran Rewards may be reallocated at any time with Referee approval by retiring a character, buying off ranked Feats with earned PP or otherwise returning the chosen benefit.

Link to comment
  • Fox changed the title to FC PbP House Rules (as of 2018/09/06)
  • April featured this topic
  • Electra unfeatured this topic
  • Fox unpinned this topic
This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Create New...